September 12th, 2012
08:29 PM ET
6 years ago

Ryan sharpens Obama foreign policy attack in Ohio

Owensville, Ohio (CNN) - In the second of his two campaign appearances Wednesday, Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan sharpened his critique of President Obama’s handling of the unfolding crises in Egypt and Libya.

“The administration sent mixed signals to those who attacked our embassy in Egypt, and mixed signals to the world,” Ryan told an outdoor crowd in Owensville, Ohio, in the heart of deep red Clermont County. “I want to be clear; it is never too early for the United States to condemn attacks on Americans, on our properties, and to defend our values. That’s what leadership is all about.”

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Ryan, reading off notes, said the administration’s policies “project weakness abroad” and segued to a broader offensive against Obama’s foreign policy record.

“Undercutting allies like Israel, outreach to enemies like Iran, national security leaks and devastating defense cuts,” he said. “A weak America breeds insecurity and chaos around the world. The best guarantee of peace is American strength. And peace through strength will be the Romney/Ryan foreign policy of this country.”

Those were tougher words than the ones he delivered in Green Bay earlier in the day, when he referenced the president indirectly.

“It’s important that a president speak with a singular voice representing our principles and our values. We don't want people around the world wondering what our values are,” he said in Wisconsin.

Ryan’s GOP ticket mate, presidential nominee Mitt Romney, harshly criticized the president for not taking a harder line against the mobs that attacked the diplomatic missions in Cairo and Benghazi. In Libya, the violence left four Americans including Ambassador Chris Stevens dead.

Other Republicans have been reluctant to embrace Romney’s line of attack – and some in the party have even chided Romney for using such heated language against the commander-in-chief in a moment of crisis.

But Ryan’s tough talk Wednesday is yet another sign that the campaign is not backing down from its blunt message.

Ryan was speaking on an outdoor stage surrounded by American flags and nearly 3,000 supporters who showed up to see Romney’s running mate campaign in southwest Ohio – and catch a free concert by country singer John Michael Montgomery.

That’s more than double the number of people who came to see Romney campaign in northeast Ohio on Monday.

Ryan was introduced by the state’s Republican governor, John Kasich, who touted the state’s job gains since 2009 and exclaimed: “Ohio is rocking!”

Kasich also had some words of praise for the political spouses who came to the rally-the wives of Kasich, Ryan and Ohio Sen. Rob Portman. He extolled their domestic skills.

“You know, Jane Portman, Karen Kasich, and Janna Ryan, they operate an awful lot of the time in the shadows,” he said. “It’s not easy to be a spouse of an elected official. You know, they’re at home, doing the laundry and doing so many things while we’re up here on the stage getting applause, right? They don’t often share in it. And it is hard for the spouse to hear the criticism and to put up with the travel schedule and to have to be at home taking care of the kids. And where is the politician? Out on the road.”

Also see:

- With attacks in Middle East, campaign turns to foreign policy

- Romney's political pretzel over Libya

- Democrats outraged with Romney foreign policy attacks

- Ryan ramps up foreign policy attack on Obama

Filed under: 2012 • Libya • Mitt Romney • Ohio • Paul Ryan
soundoff (109 Responses)
  1. Dan5404

    Yes, Obama i weak beause he doesn't invade Libya, Egypt, Syria and Iran. the gop is ok with fighting four wars ar once..unfunded, like their last president did with Iraq and Afghanistan. Wonder where they'll get enough troops and weapons to do that? Rryan and Romney are both clueless in international politics and really need to keep quiet because their ignorance and lack of dignity in this tragedy is disgusting to a lot of people, including a lot of Republicans.

    September 12, 2012 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  2. Namejkane sfl a vote for the gop will cut your moms medicare and soc sec .can you afford to pay for them???

    Lyin Ryan is a low life house member ,let's kick him out in,Nov ,he's going to lose vp anyway and has been spongeing off tax payers long enough ,and his partner is romney the tax cheat

    September 12, 2012 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  3. jonathan

    What exactly do Mitt and Paul Ryan should be done about what happened in Libya? Should we invade it and start yet another war? should we just send in some drone strikes? are nuclear options on the table for them? This just proves that as president you need to actually think before you open your mouth or act and obviously neither Romney nor Ryan seem to possess that ability.

    September 12, 2012 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  4. Anthony in California

    Is this guy crazy....?

    The ONE area Mitt and Ryan might have wanted to stay far far away from regarding Obama was foreign policy.

    Its a no win. Romney even had his chance to show whatever ability he may have had, but we all saw how well that trip went.
    This is the same as Ryan doubling down on his lies. It aint gonna work.

    We all know Mitt wouldn't have went after Osama, he said it himself. We all know Ryan hasn't piped about foreign policy at all up until now.

    These clowns need to stop embarrassing themselves.

    September 12, 2012 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  5. Larry L

    Ahh... So after Romney's low class and dishonest comments during the onset of the Libyan crisis they've decided to send "Lyin-Ryan" to spread the lies and distortions. Ryan has yet to tell the truth and his lies about his plans for Medicare and Social Security are especially disturbing. Make no mistake – he knows he was lying about his marathon time and he knows he's lying about Medicare! He is a pathological liar.

    September 12, 2012 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  6. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    And what experience does Ryan have? I don't think that Romney has any more which is enough to know that there is an atlas that has maps of the world.

    September 12, 2012 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  7. GOP is Dead

    Would the Republicans send troops in to Cairo? When a war is started are they ready to reinstate the military draft? Remember, Bush's two wars have depleted our forces and our military equipment. To fight in a war expanded by U.S. military intervention we would absolutely require the draft. Are Americans really willing to send their childrn to die for Romney's war? Of course we know his children will not go fight and potentially die. He's a rich Republican.

    September 12, 2012 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  8. Craig RB

    Ryan is such a child and a child who lies just to get attention. If he spoke the truth Romney wouldn't have picked him as his side-kick.

    September 12, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  9. rdeleys

    Ryan has already been thoroughly discredited and has been shown to be a serial liar. Why would anyone listen to him?

    September 12, 2012 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  10. Loathstheright

    And Lying Ryan is lying again, how can anyone believe this serial liar?

    September 12, 2012 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  11. rdeleys

    Ryan has already been shown to be a serial liar and has been thoroughly discredited. Why would anyone listen to anything he has to say?

    September 12, 2012 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  12. OCCavoter

    Ronmey/Ryan are done on the polictical mainstream. They're not ready for any presidential stage.


    September 12, 2012 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  13. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Amazing how quickly Romney and Ryan learned to be foreign policy experts and so willing to share their knowledge with the president..... how generous... of course I fear that should they have the opportunity to apply this knowledge we....the citizens of the U.S. would find it more than we could live with!!!... They both think they know everything and that every one else is wrong...If come Romney has to back down on almost every thing HE says and RYAN cannot tell the truth about anything????? VERY INTERESTING!!!!

    September 12, 2012 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  14. rep

    Ryan said: “I want to be clear; it is never too early for the United States to condemn attacks on Americans, on our properties, and to defend our values."

    Then we should just condemn them all right now for all time in the future because the embassy made its statement BEFORE the attacks even began–not after. Wow...I used to think Romney & Ryan were merely unqualified. Now I'm beginning to think they are complete morons...and dangerous ones at that.

    September 12, 2012 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  15. mississippi

    Looking for leaks , now you know ! How did the get the information be the breaching !

    September 12, 2012 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  16. deb

    No, ryan, leadership is NOT about a knee-jerk reaction. Leadership is more than that. It is collecting and assessing the facts and coming up with a solution that is respectable, ethical, moral and legal.

    September 12, 2012 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  17. Joan

    Probably the government is already doing this, but I think media investigators should be looking to find out what individuals or groups were behind the making of the offensive film which obviously was meant to incite hatred and violence. It costs a lot to make a two hour movie with eighty actors, so the guy must have had someone with money behind him. If he is an American-Israeli who hates Muslims then he probably is a Conservative. Also, I read on another site that he was supported by that crazy pastor from Florida who also caused violence when he burnt the Quran. He was a far right radical. Now I am not making any accusations, but if there were individuals behind this whole thing who wanted to create unrest and violence in the region then they should be rooted out and exposed for the cowards and criminals that they are. They have the weight of the deaths of four innocent American citizens on their shoulders. They need to be held accountable. I hope the truth comes out.

    September 12, 2012 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  18. David in NC

    The negative attacks on President Obama made by Ryan and Romney over the tragedy in Libya show not only a complete lack of compassion for the slain Foreign Service workers and their families, but a fundamental failure to understand the daily realities of foreign policy service.
    These are men and women who have to go to extraordinary lengths to maintain diplomatic relations that are designed to not only foster good will with the United States but also try and prevent violence against this country and themselves.
    On a daily basis they face dangers of a magnitude that most people in this country cannot begin to understand. If issuing press releases or statements that are not necessarily in-line with official government policy helps ease the dangers they face, then I say more power to them, especially when it might help ease tensions and save lives.
    The Ryan rhetoric is just another example of an American politician willing to say and do anything in his personal power grab. Their distortions of the facts and their failure to admit they were wrong in their reactions is just another example of the lack of integrity they possess.

    September 12, 2012 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  19. JMaster

    Ryan has no foreign policy experience whatsoever and he is being critical of Obama's record! Bin Laden is dead, we have exited Iraq and will from Afganistan, Kaddafi is gone, al Qaeda is dismantled and somehow this imbecile thinks he can do better! Laughable!

    September 12, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  20. tonyinlargo

    This attitude by Romney and Ryan of making statements in an untimely manner re: the attacks in Libya, points out 2 important handicaps that these gentlemen, who aspire to be President and Vice-President, bring to the table.. First, they are speaking out before having all the facts correct. Second they are desperate because they are behind in the polls. We don't want anyone who doesn't think things thru at the helm and gets desperate with a little bit of heat. Stay home Romney. Stay home Ryan. .

    September 12, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  21. LD

    Romney-Ryan's foreign policy.. nuke em til they glow.

    September 12, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  22. BIll

    "A weak America breeds insecurity and chaos in the Middle East.' So, American military prowess and might should make the Middle East orderly and secure, right? We're going on to 10 years of continuous, Republican-started war in the Middle East now, and where's that order and security? Huh? A go-it-alone, belligerant, bullying America with ignorant men in control and a ruling party of bigots and super-patriots. That's what breeds insecurity and chaos. Intelligent, calm, thoughtful and purposeful policy that makes careful assessments and shows respect for other cultures and colors–that's what brings order and calm.

    September 12, 2012 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  23. tina

    really rommey and ryan crazy. anything to get a vote not going to work.

    September 12, 2012 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  24. Romney/Ryan = Bought & Paid For All Along

    Republicans are openly trying to start a war in the Mid-East. The "chicken-hawk" attitude they are showing with Romney's foolish comments during the midst of the recent crisis shows how poorly he is prepared to assume the role of Commander-In-Chief. Heres' a core question... If Republicans start yet another unnecessary war – are YOU WILLING TO DIE FOR THE CAUSE? REALLY? You can be sure Romney, Lyin-Ryan or their children won't fight. That's a job for the kids of the working folks – not modern Republican fat-cats.

    September 12, 2012 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  25. Paul

    The Republicans time and time again are proving themselves to be the same batch of imbeciles who brought us the Bush administration.

    September 12, 2012 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
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